Golf Lessons

Parent Q&A

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  • Golf for a 5 year old

    (2 replies)

    We have a kid who has been obsessed with golf for the last couple of years. He constantly wants to practice putting indoors, go mini golfing, go to the practice range, try screen golf, set up golf courses in our house and outdoors, and on and on. It seems like most group programs don't start until age 6+. I'd love to find a way to productively channel all this energy and interest, wondering if anyone had suggestions? I keep thinking private lessons seem like overkill in terms of cost, but maybe it's worth it given this interest that never seems to go away. Anyone go through anything similar or have any advice? Thank you!

    Depending on your location, check out the First Tee program.  It starts at 5yo.

    Have you tried the First Tee organization?  There's chapters all over the Bay Area.  My son started at 5 years old and has stuck with it up until now, age 14. It's a great organization with a balance of teambuilding skills and golf. 

  • Golf Lessons for Teen Boy

    (3 replies)

    Our DS wants to learn to play golf and we are hoping to find someone to teach him at the Alameda course. Does not have to be a certified instructor or golf pro necessarily, maybe a college student looking for some summer work (or even a HS student) who plays on the school golf team who can teach him the basics? TIA

    The course has reasonably priced instruction available, In my experience, I'm pretty sure using an instructor not authorized by the course will not be allowed.

    I've taught my kids and am teaching another now but live in SF.  I start at the range and then go to the course and back & forth between the range & the course as they begin to understand how to use the clubs & the differences when on the course and learning course etiquette.  

    Let me know if you can't find anyone else, I could help but we'd have to figure out the distances to travel.



    Hi Christine:

    I am looking for someone to teach my kids golf.  We are in SF.  Let me know the best way to reach you. 

  • How and where to try out golf

    (1 reply)

    I’m seeking suggestions for beginning golf for a teenager. Weekend and/or summer opportunities in the East Bay? Golf courses have been open during COVID but not sure what is happening or will happen with lessons. Thanks for any ideas.


    I'm not sure about lessons, but my teenager has gotten the golf bug too! He and a couple of friends (one who actually knows the game, the others don't) started going to the driving range at public courses about a month ago and now they're all hooked. I think they learned enough from the friend who plays to start playing 9 holes, occasionally 18, and they love it. My son bought a set of used clubs for $40 and set up a spot in the back yard to practice his swing. It's a great Covid activity: outdoors, easy to distance and masks on. Maybe put the word out on NextDoor or elsewhere to see if another teen golfer could  show your teen the ropes? 

Archived Q&A and Reviews


Golfing class for 9 year old?

March 2014

I have 9 yr old that I want to find golf lessons for. We've done the Nike Golf Camps in the summer at Tilden but they are so expensive. Is there anything during the school year or less expensive in the Berkeley area? Vmn

My son enjoyed the regular youth golf lessons at Tilden. We signed him up for a group lesson but there ended up being only one other boy in his class so he essentially had private lessons for the price of a group. I think he started at about age 9. cocosar

Seeking a great golf pro for teen golfer

Dec 2010

My 15 yr old son is very into golf and is quite good. I want to give him individual lessons as a christmas gift. I heard the pro (female) at Tilden is good but I prefer a male teacher for him. We live in Albany so anywhere within a 30 minute drive is best for us. Thanks! g

I would like to recommend a family friend, Erik Stone, who teaches at the Chuck Corica Golf Center in Alameda, California. He learned to play at that Golf Course when he was a small boy, continuing on to professional play and coaching. My son took a number of lessons with him early on and appreciated his coaching style and warm personality. Here is a link to his page on the Alameda Golf Course website: Kim

Golf Instructor Needed for 13 y.o. girl

March 2007

We are looking for a good golf instructor for one-on-one lessons for a 13 year old girl. She is a beginner/intermediate player who is very interested in improving her game. We would prefer someone who is located in the East Bay. Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated. Amy

I recommend Trish Hinze up at Tilden Park. She has been instructing for years and is great at it. They have after school and summer camps as well. Denise

I would highly recommend Janet Coles. Go to As a junior herself she had the best swing I have ever seen. She played for UCLA, went on to play on the tour and did quite well. She's a great teacher. Gary

I would recommend contacting the pro shop at the Tilden Park golf course. They do provide one-on-one lessons, as I recall, and I was impressed with their skills and rapport with kids when my daughters did the group lessons there last year. They also have summer golf camps for serious golfer kids. golf mom

Golf for 7 year old girl in Contra Costa County

August 2006

my 7 year old girl loves her little plastic baby golf clubs, but i would like to take her to a kid-friendly place in contra costa county, where we could rent or buy real clubs (her size, of course) and hit balls, putt, perhaps have a lesson or two. thanks doug

Try Grayson Woods in Pleasant Hill It's only nine holes, with a putting course and they have a lot of junior activites. It's good for working on your short game, too! Missing Golf

Tilden Golf Course has an excellent kids' golf program. My two young daughters enjoyed it very much. They do have a putting green and driving range as well. It's not the right county, but I strongly recommend their program Golf mom

Public golf course with lessons for 13-year-old girl

October 2005

Looking for other public golf courses that can provide lessons to a beginning pre-teenager. We have tried Tilden which is great, but looking for something closer to El Sobrante. Any thoughts are appreciated. Thank you. Cindy

Try the Alameda par 3 golf course. The pro there is named Woody. He is great and works with teens. golfer

Pretty much every golf course will have a teaching ''pro'' who you can hire for lessons. I've had lessons at both Montclair and Chabot in Oakland. The course in Alameda apparently has a well respected golf program for kids.

You might try Franklin Canyon Golf in Hercules. It's not that far from El Sobrante, just the opposite direction from Berkeley. It is located just a little ways out highway 4. Good luck! Eden

There are many options for golf lessons near El Sobrante. Franklin Canyon in Hercules, Blue Rock Springs in Vallejo, and Richmond Country Club off of Richmond Parkway (I'm pretty darned sure you don't need to be a member to take lessons.) Mira Vista Country Club in El Cerrito now offers a very low price junior membership and may have lessons.

If you're willing to drive, Alameda Junior Golf Club offers free Saturday morning lessons at the Chuck Corica complex at Harbor Bay as well as free equipment, clothing and balls to any junior.

Some juniors I've known have taken lessons at Peacock Gap in San Rafael, and the Olympic Club in San Francisco.

I believe your junior can take lessons just about anywhere, public or private. However, if you're looking for group classes it's harder during the school year.

Not sure what you have against Tilden though... Lucy

I've never used it, but the Chuck Corica golf course in Alameda offers lessons. The golf course is as flat as a pancake, but that would be good for a beginner. Their website is:

Summer golf for 6-year-old

Feb 2004

Our 6 y.o. is very interested in golf and we'd like to get her in a camp that includes golf this summer, or into golf lessons. Any suggestions? I know Country Clubs often offer these, but we are not members. Thanks. monika

There is alot of support for junior golf in the Bay Area. First of all, Tilden Park Golf Course offers lessons and camps for children year round. They have a very nice staff, and a good program. My son took lessons there for years and he is now a nationally ranked golfer and on the Varsity team at Berkeley High. In fact the Berkeley High coach, Nik Dang is now a teacher at Tilden. Tilden's number is 848-7373. Once your daughter learns to play it only costs $5 for juniors to play the course in the afternoons. The other fantastic place is the Alameda Jr. Golf Club at the Chuck Corica Golf Complex at Harbor Bay Isle. They have a junior program with free Saturday clinics, summer tournaments, and absolutely free equipment, clothing and balls for all juniors. There is an easy, and extremely cheap (it used to be be $1) par three course there which is good for kids. Their phone number is 521-4727. Another fun place for kids just learning to play is the Montclair Golf Course where they have a small Par 3 course, just right for kids, with no pressure from serious adults getting impatient.

Golf is a fantastic sport for girls. There's alot of opportunity, great camaraderie and plenty of scholarships for college. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me. Lucy

Nike Golf school @ Tilden GC in Berkeley! Perfect place and great teaching, plus golf camps for kids during the summer. I go there for adult golf lessons too. Love the game of Golf

The City of Albany just put out their Spring brochure and I found a wide variety of summer sport camps in there. Golf was listed. cp

Tilden Park golf course has lessons and camps (through Nike) but prices seem pretty steep to me.

Golf lessons for pre-teen

May 2003

Any recommendations for a golf class for 8-10 year olds? My son is interested in trying it out, but I don't think a traditional golf pro may be the right way until he determines whether or not it is fun. Before we invest in clubs and greens fees, does anyone know of a class or group lesson that would cover the basics?

Try the Nike golf school at Tilden Golf Course. We have gone to a number of different Nike Golf classes (they have Nike golf at Northstar in Tahoe) for our daughter who is now 10 and they are fun. Good luck and may the little white ball go in the hole! Golf Mom

For a free introduction to golf check out the Alameda Jr. Golf Club at the Chuck Corica Golf complex in Alameda on Harbor Bay Isle. They offer free clubs and balls to all kids, and free lessons on Saturday morning. There is a par 3 course which is only a few dollars to play.

Montclair Golf Course is also a par 3 course which rents clubs for a few dollars to play the course. This is a great place to try out golf. It is off of Park Blvd.

Once your child gets more interested, Tilden Park Golf Course offers group lessons, camps, and individual lessons. Ron McQueen is a very good teacher for juniors. It only costs $5 for juniors to play the course in the afternoon. Lucy

Try calling Tilden Park Golf Course, Franklin Canyon in Rodeo or Marina Bay in San Leandro. They are all AGPA course and have Nike golf lessons for kids and adults. I believe they have a summer camp schedule for kids during the summer. The minimum age is 7. I took the adults lessons and they covered everything, from etiquitte to long range drives. I really enjoyed taking the classes 2 years ago and am ready to take the next level of courses to really fine tune my game. It was a great deal, clubs are provided if you don't have a set, and you get 5 free rounds after completing the lessons (I think it was 2 lessons a week for a month). What I really liked about it was that they have new golfer night once a week for all ages to come and play with fellow beginners. It was fun. He should enjoy it. Kerri

The Tilden Park Golf Course offers kids'lessons as part of the Nike Golf Learning Center. They have classes in age groupings including one for 6-11 year olds. My six-year-old just finished his first month in the classes. One big plus is that they provide the clubs, so you don't have to buy any unless your child really likes it and wants to practice on his/her own. I thought the instruction was good and there is a serious emphasis on the character pillars of golf. The cost is $79 per month, with an introductory rate of $49 for the first month, for up to 8 lessons (see my caution below). There is a 6-month package rate too. They don't take the kids on the course - just the range and putting green - at least in the beginning levels.

One big caution, though: They divide instuction by achievement levels. There is a test to get to the next level, and the instructor decides when you can take the test. Once you take it, your instruction is over, even though you have not finished the month of lessons. I felt ripped-off by this, since they tested before the end of the month (the 19th) and they charged an extra $10 for the test. Perhaps this is only an issue for the first level since it is easy to pass to the second. Just beware, as this wasn't explained when I signed up. Becky